TECHNOLOGY SERVICES (ITS)
David Ernst, Assistant Vice Chancellor
TECHNOLOGY SERVICES (ATS)
Skills: The CSU has earned the WCET (formerly Western
Cooperative for Educational Telecommunications) 2006 Outstanding
Work Award for its Math Success and English Success websites,
developed by the Center for Distributed Learning. These websites
were designed to help students prepare for the Entry Level Mathematics
and English Placement Tests they must take after being admitted
to the CSU. More information.
Grant Awarded: MERLOT has received a $680,000 grant
from The Fund for the Improvement of Post-Secondary Education,
(FIPSE) a program within the federal Department of Education.
The MERLOT ELIXR project is intended to foster and test new
collaborations among faculty development centers and online
resource repositories to create innovative models for the development,
sharing and use of discipline-oriented online resources. The
MERLOT ELIXR project team includes the CSU Center for Distributed
Learning, seven CSU campuses, three MERLOT state system partners
(Minnesota, Georgia and Oklahoma), Coastline Community College,
Indiana State University, Brigham Young University and the Ohio
MERLOT International Conference (MIC) update More than
425 people attended the MIC, "Working with and Learning
from the World's Best." The MIC, hosted by the Co-operative
Learning Object Exchange (CLOE) and the University of Ottawa
included more than 150 presentations, workshops, and poster
sessions. It received sponsorship support from 12 leading technology
companies. The launch of the new MERLOT website, www.merlot.org
which includes an improved user interface and new features was
a highlight of the conference.
Library Initiatives: Originating from the systemwide
library strategic plan published in late 2005, a new planning
framework for the development of campus-based institutional
repositories has been developed. Technical approaches to integrating
library resources and services with learning management systems
are being explored, and a review of systemwide library facility
standards has commenced with the goal of establishing library
design standards that best support student success. In addition
to the new systemwide initiatives, progress continues to be
made in ongoing projects that resulted from previous strategic
planning. The Electronic Core Collection has been enhanced with
the addition of new full text databases, use of the newly developed
scenario-based ICT Literacy Assessment of student skills is
expanding, and refinements continue to be made to online library
information search and retrieval tools using emerging web services
technologies. More information about these projects and a PDF
version of the 2005 library strategic plan are available at
Build-Out - Stage 1 and Stage 2: Stage 1: Eighteen
of the twenty-two campus projects in the build-out program are
complete. Two of the four remaining campus Stage 1 projects
are on track. The other two remaining campuses have encountered
contractor issues and their projects are delayed as they work
towards suitable resolutions.
2: While the two campuses that have encountered Stage 1
delays have put their Stage 2 designs on hold, the remaining
campuses continue to make significant progress. Chico and Fresno
are nearing the completion of their physical designs while Fullerton,
Monterey Bay and San Diego are at various points in their implementation
phase. The fifteen other campuses have all completed their Stage
a reminder, the ‘phases’ group campuses in the order
that they undertake the TII project. ‘Stage 1’ refers
to the physical construction of pathways, spaces and media on
campuses; ‘Stage 2’ represents the installation
of the necessary electronic components.)
Terminal Resources Project Refresh (ITRP 2): ITRP 2
is the first refresh cycle for the network infrastructure installed
as a part of Stage 2 of the Technology Infrastructure Build-Out
Project. The program is intended to enable campus networks to
stay current with network technology and address evolving requirements.
ITRP 2 will include the following technology areas of focus;
Routing and switching (providing network connectivity and
Wireless networking (providing users with connectivity without
having to ‘plug in’ to a jack)
Network security (preventing unauthorized network access)
Network management systems (allowing monitoring of network
alpha implementation of the first phase of the network security
implementation was successfully conducted at Humboldt on October
8. The process will be evaluated for areas of improvement; beta
implementations will begin in late November at Los Angeles and
Sacramento. Phase 2 and 3 of the network security implementations
are being developed under the guidance of the Network Technology
Alliance (NTA) network security working group.
wireless working group concluded their bakeoff process and has
developed a recommendation for the wireless component of ITRP
2. The recommendation was presented to NTA on October 17 and
to ITAC on October 20 and endorsed by both groups. The decision
will soon be announced by the Chancellor’s Office Contract
Services and Procurement department.
NTA routing and switching working group commissioned an analysis
by AT&T of the ability of Cisco equipment to continue to
meet the routing and switching needs of CSU. The resulting report,
which indicates that Cisco equipment can continue to meet CSU
needs, has been submitted to the group and a review is underway.
Management System (NMS): NMS, a set of software tools
that allows campuses to monitor and measure their network performance
and quickly identify points of failure when problems arise,
has been installed on all 23 campuses.
Campus Collaboration Center (C3) team has been formed and is
meeting weekly to develop a model that allows campuses to collaborate
on NMS management. The intent is to provide an efficient NMS
solution by working together on the hosting of the servers,
the administration of the server operating systems, and the
administration of the network management applications. If successful,
the concept could be expanded beyond network management to other
Infrastructure Asset Management System (NIAMS): This
asset management tool is a software application that allows
campuses to maintain records of their network infrastructure
by tracking cables and equipment locations on campus. Implementation
is underway on the first wave of campuses and TIS has established
a centralized NIAMS application and database support center
to minimize campus resource requirements for NIAMS deployment.
campus implementations are on schedule: San Jose, Monterey Bay,
Pomona and San Marcos campuses are beginning their implementation
phases. East Bay, Chico, and San Francisco campuses are still
scheduled for staging in early 2007, and a site visit is scheduled
for Northridge in mid-December 2006.
implementation team is planning additional training workshops
for campuses. Course details and scheduling information will
be provided at a later date.
Access Infrastructure Initiative (CAI): The Campus
Access Infrastructure Initiative (CAI), the system-wide program
that will install and maintain the infrastructure required to
connect each campus local area network (LAN) to the CENIC wide-area
network backbone (CalREN), is well underway. This project consists
of two phases: installing enhanced network cabling and providing
managed fiber circuit connections. Installing these cables and
fiber circuit connections will provide improved network reliability,
while enhancing network capacity and increasing its stability.
campuses now have dual connections. Also, enhanced network cabling
installations are pending at the WestEd office in Los Alamitos
and Channel Islands. Special construction at the Los Angeles
campus should be completed later this month and San Marcos installation
is pending a contract between the CSU and CENIC.
regard to the CENIC Managed Fiber (CMF) circuit installations,
Maritime Academy’s first CMF connection is operational
and the second CMF should be operational before the end of the
month. Monterey Bay’s installation is progressing with
a due date pending from CENIC; both East Bay CMF installations
should be completed by the end of the month. Sacramento’s
CMF circuits are waiting on CENIC hardware installation and
should be operational by November. Stanislaus, Fresno, Bakersfield,
Pomona, and San Bernardino are waiting on survey information
to determine cost details.
and other written agreements have been signed for the fiber
agreement between CENIC and the City of San Francisco, for the
San Francisco campus with a possible November 30 installation
and Access Management Initiative (IAM): The Identity
and Access Management Initiative is chartered with developing
and defining the architecture for secure access and data management
at the campus level. The mission of IAM is to enable users to
access and exchange information from campus-to-campus, campus
to other institutions (e.g., K-14), and campus to business (e.g.,
on-line Library materials), while maintaining security standards
and user accessibility permissions.
presentation of the IAM governance structure was made to the
Technology Steering Committee (TSC) at the August 29 meeting.
TSC re-affirmed governance structure consisting of an Executive
Committee reporting to the TSC and two sub-committees focusing
on the business process/policy issues and the technical issues.
The only addition made to the previously presented governance
chart was representation for continuing/extended education.
Technical Architecture Group (TAG) met again September 11 and
12. The cost model and proposed timelines presented to ITAC
at the August meeting were discussed and agreement was reached
that all campuses that do not currently have a central directory
will be able to have one in place by end of calendar year 2007.
Website Project: TIS has been tasked with designing
and implementing the technology for a web-based solution that
will allow public information officers/public affairs directors
at all CSU campuses to publish communications information for
students, CSU employees/staff/faculty, media, and the general
public, in case of an emergency and the primary campus website
presence is unavailable. This solution must be easy to use,
require little or no specialized client software and be accessible
over any internet connection. It also must be active and available
any time— 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If an emergency
occurs, the resource will be activated, allowing users attempting
to access a webpage of an existing campus to automatically be
redirected to the emergency website. The CSU Emergency Communications
Website is meant to be activated in case of an emergency, and
will be limited to providing only basic communications information.
It is not a disaster recovery site, nor a complete failover
site for the World Wide Web presence of an existing campus.
implementations of the emergency website are proceeding, with
Long Beach completing the design and publishing of their emergency
content and templates. Sixteen other campuses are currently
working on their implementations with TIS and CENIC.
Architecture (EA): This summer, the EA Steering Committee
will focus on conducting an environmental scan and review of
business drivers affecting IT. The goal would be to produce
a document of commonly shared assumptions about business goals/strategies
and environmental factors expected to affect the CSU’s
IT operations and services.
EA Workshop, hosted by TIS with presentations by the Gartner
Group, an IT research and consulting firm, was held at the Crowne
Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles on Tuesday, October 3. The workshop’s
23 attendees were comprised of ITAC members and campus staff
involved in architecture projects and Chancellor’s Office
staff. The presentations made by the Gartner Group provided
an introduction to the value and positioning of enterprise architecture,
and the development of its models and governance structure within
Data Center Transition: The CSU’s new data center
includes simplified architecture to reduce support costs, increased
flexibility to meet the various different campus needs, a scalable
environment, the same architecture design and hardware for production
and non-production and improved security controls.
data center project is currently in the post-transition stage
with resources focused on resolving the development environment
performance issues. Efforts are currently underway to increase
performance in the development environment for campuses.
MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS (CMS)
Warehouse Update: The Data Warehouse Scope committee
is continuing its work on a scope revision. An Executive Overview
was presented to the CMS Executive Committee (EC) at their October
9-10th, retreat. The Scope Committee will be vetting the overview
with Student Administration Implementing Campuses (10/18), Technical
Users Group (10/19), Institutional Research Directors (11/10),
CMS Project Directors (11/9 requested), Finance Users Group
(TBA), Human Resource Users Groups (TBA) and Chancellor’s
Office systemwide offices (TBA). The recommendation will be
finalized for presentation to the EC at the November 28th meeting.
Administration Update:The Student Administration (SA)
Team has successfully supported East Bay, Sacramento and San
Bernardino Admissions Go live. These campuses, along with campuses
that had previously implemented SA, have successfully loaded
more than 40,000 applications using the CMS supported Mentor
interface. The SA Team successfully conducted multiple web casts
in preparation for the on October 17th. in-person meeting to
"preview" the Degree Audit Presentation in support
of the Facilitating Graduation (FacGrad) Initiative Eleven SA
campuses have been participating in the FacGrad Guide group
which will conclude with a one-month campus testing period prior
to the release of the final project. The SA team supported the
"go-live" of Fresno State as the 2nd HR/SA campus
to successfully upgrade to v8.9. For the 3rd, CSU’s he
SA Team has been selected time to participate in the Oracle
Hosted Beta v9.0 program that runs from now until December 1st.
and Documentation Update: The Training and Documentation
(TDoc) team is in the process of redesigning the CMS website
to improve content, technology and design. Content will be reorganized
to accommodate the growth of CMS/ITS by adding special projects
and new services such as the Data Warehouse, SCO Project, Fees-in-Trust,
and Upgrade Services. New web technologies will be used behind-the-scenes
to ensure greater usability compliance, and the new Chancellor’s
Office branding and colors will be applied. The new website
is set to launch on January 5, 2007.
INFORMATION SECURITY MANAGEMENT
The following nine campuses have been identified
for the Unisys Security Consultants to visit for the Systemwide
Security Plan Project:
Large Size Campus
Medium Size Campuses
San Luis Obispo
Small Size Campuses
As of October 19, 2006, San Marcos, Sonoma, SLO and the Office
of the Chancellor have been visited. The campus visits will
be completed by December 15, 2006.
The target completion date for the draft Systemwide Security
Plan (by Unisys Security) is mid-January 2007.
ADVICE AND POLICY
of Success: Data analysis and writing are in progress
for this year’s report. It is the sixth year of measuring
progress against the baseline year of 2000. The annual campus
survey was revised this year to reflect the current emphasis
on security and accessibility. The faculty survey was also revised
to include items on LMS and other issues not covered in the
past. This year is the third and last in the series for the
faculty and staff surveys; the final student survey will occur
next spring. Hard copies and CDs will be mailed to the Legislature
and campus constituencies in December.
Best Practices: The year-long study of best practices
in IT strategic planning was presented to the Information Technology
Advisory Committee (ITAC) at their October meeting. The Strategic
Planning (SP) workgroup requested more time for their colleagues
to examine the report and discuss its potential implications
with their presidents, provosts, IT staff, and others. Given
the wide variety of SP practices on the campuses, the workgroup
wanted to make sure that any recommendations contained in the
transmission to the TSC reflect the consensus of the full ITAC.
The report and recommendations will be presented to the TSC
in January 2007should reach the Executive Council in February.